The United Nations Population Fund says it plans to screen 5,000 persons for HIV/AIDS daily during the December Calabar Carnival in Cross River State.
The Programme Officer of UNFPA in Nigeria, Araoyimbo Idowu, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Calabar on Sunday.
Idowu said that UNFPAw would conduct the tests in collaboration with an NGO, Excellence Community Education Welfare Scheme.
He said the fund would organise an awareness campaign tagged “Wise Up Cross River” on a daily basis throughout the one month carnival.
Idowu said: “There is going to be some demonstration by youths and various stakeholders during the HIV/AIDS awareness campaign.
“In the course of the campaign, there will be various activities including one-on-one counseling, music, graphic designs, tattoo inscription and games.
“Also, many young volunteers and other stakeholders will be on stage to entertain people each day at the condom zone.”
The programme officer said that the campaign was aimed at sensitising the youths on the dangers of HIV/AIDS and the need for safe sex.
Idowu said that the programme would also bring together commercial sex workers, students’ organisations and those already living with the virus, to share knowledge on the disease.
He said that the organisation would mobilise youths from the 18 local government areas in the state to participate in the programme.
Idowu also said that condoms would be distributed free during the month-long campaign.
According to him, the UNPF decided to bring the campaign to the carnival because of its popularity and mass participation.